In an interview with CNBC’s David Faber, Sumner Redstone, the powerful media mogul in charge of National Amusements and controlling stakes in Viacom and CBS, had some words for Rupert Murdoch.
The News Corp chairman has been the subject of terse headlines recently.
DAVID FABER: And when you look at a Rupert Murdoch, do you
think you know, at some point, what’ll happen there in terms of
succession? Another controlled media company, of course, the same way
SUMNER REDSTONE: I think Rupert is very smart. He’s a great leader.
But I think he’s made a mistake, my opinion. He’s buried in ink. And
in my view, there won’t be any real newspaper business 10 years from
now. Fortunately, we’re buried in television and movies. They’ll be
here forever, all over the world.
DAVID FABER: You think that’s gonna come back to haunt him, his love
SUMNER REDSTONE: Well, I’m not and I don’t wish him anything bad. I
would like him to succeed. But when you pay $5 billion for the Wall
Street Journal without competition, it’s not so easy to succeed. But
he’s great. He’s a great leader. I’m not knocking him. We have a
different point of view. That’s all.
Earlier in the interview, Faber floated the idea of merging studios with Fox.
DAVID FABER: You know some people say you should just you should sell
it, that you could sell it or you could merge it with Rupert’s studio.
SUMNER REDSTONE: With who?
DAVID FABER: And make a lot of money, and get paid a lot of money,
cause there’s a lot of up side in having a combination of two big
SUMNER REDSTONE: Have you ever known me to be motivated by money?
DAVID FABER: No, but I know you to be motivated by creating shareholder value.
SUMNER REDSTONE: Shareholder value, when it’s in the long-term
interests of share I never make a decision for the short-term value of
our company or for investors. My goal is what’s in the long-term
interests of investors and our companies. And it’s not in the
long-term interest of these companies to do what you just suggested.
DAVID FABER: Why not?
SUMNER REDSTONE: Because we’re the best. Why should we merge with less
than the best? We are the best companies.
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